- Stephen Jones (rugby player)
Infobox Rugby biography
name = Stephen Jones
birthname = Stephen Michael Jones
dateofbirth = birth date and age|1977|12|8
height = convert|1.83|m|ftin|abbr=on
weight = convert|95|kg|stlb|abbr=on
ru_position = Fly-half|capital=yes / inside centre
ru_clubyears = 1996-2003
ru_clubcaps = ?
ru_clubpoints = (?)
Llanelli Scarlets Llanelli Scarlets
ru_provinceyears = 2003-2004
ru_provincecaps = 12
ru_provincepoints = (146)
ru_provinceupdate = 18:13, 21 February 2008 (UTC)
ru_nationalteam = Wales
British and Irish Lions
ru_nationalyears = 1998-
ru_nationalcaps = 71
ru_nationalpoints = (634)
ru_ntupdate = 18:13, 21 February 2008 (UTC)
Stephen Michael Jones (born
8 December 1977in Aberystwyth) is a Welsh rugby unionfootballer who plays at fly-half for Llanelli Scarletsand Wales. He has also played at inside centre on various occasions.
Llanelli RFCin 1996, staying there until the 2003–04 season. He played his last Welsh club season for the Llanelli Scarlets, the Llanelliside in the new Welsh regional setup. In his Welsh top-level career, he made more than 200 appearances and scored almost 2,000 points.
In 2004, he joined Clermont Auvergne, formerly known as Montferrand. After two years at Clermont he returned to play for the Scarlets in 2006.
He has had a successful club career both with Clermont Auvergne and the Llanelli Scarlets. At the former he was chosen by French journalists as the fly half of the season in his second year at the club. Now back at the Scarlets, Jones and the team had an excellent run in the Heineken Cup in 2007 and reached the semi-finals after tremendous wins home and away against Ulster and Toulouse, and a comfortable home victory against 2006 winners Munster in the quarter finals. Unfortunately, the Scarlets ultimately came unstuck against bogey side Leicester in the semi final.
Stephen Jones has ended speculation over his future by signing a new three-year contract with the
Llanelli Scarlets. He had been heavily linked with a move to French club Biarritz after triggering a clause in his contract allowing him to talk to other clubs.cite web|url=http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/rugby_union/my_club/llanelli_scarlets/7206314.stm|title=Jones signs new Scarlets contract|publisher=BBC|date=2008-01-24|accessdate=2008-01-25]
Jones played a prominent role in Wales' grand slam triumph of 2005. As Welsh fly half he scored the majority of the team's points, his best game being the victory in Paris in which he scored 14 points including a drop goal and made a searing 60 metre break which led to Martyn Williams' first try. In the championship decider against Ireland at the Millennium Stadium he scored another 19 points and steered Wales to their first Grand slam for 27 years. He was later named fly-half of the championship for 2005.
In October 2006 head coach
Gareth Jenkinsnamed Jones as captain to lead Wales through to the 2007 World Cup. On his appointment of Jones, Jenkins said "Stephen has all the attributes to make a magnificent captain of his country. He has the respect and regard of his players, leadership qualities that are evident for all to see and the talent and ability to lead from the front at game time".cite web |title=Jenkins names 32 man squad for Invesco Perpetual Series ... and Stephen Jones as captain |publisher=wru.co.uk |url=http://www.wru.co.uk/2_9049.php |accessdate=2006-10-21 ]
In the 2008 RBS Six Nations, Stephen Jones made 4 appearances in his second grandslam championship win with Wales. He put away 7 conversions and 10 penalties, adding up to 44 points, despite starting the tournament as second choice to
British and Irish Lions
He was selected for the British and Irish Lions tour to New Zealand. Although Jones was the on-form fly-half, the Head Coach,
Sir Clive Woodwardselected the barely match fit Jonny Wilkinsonahead of him. Many people in the Rugby world saw this as the wrong decision and many believed that Jonny Wilkinsonshould not even tour, let alone play, as at the time he had only recently recovered from a serious injury.
* [http://www.scarlets.co.uk/the-region/PlayerDetails.aspx?ID=100606 Scarlets profile]
* [http://www.wru.co.uk/63_1787.php Wales profile]
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